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Fishing highlights – June 2024
Monthly recreation opportunities by region

WDFW’s trout derby continues a strong start

Hundreds of prizes still up for grabs

By Michael Foster/WDFW

Early summer continues to be an exciting time for the annual statewide Trout Derby. The cooler spring weather has extended the prime fishing conditions, so we’re sharing the rundown of what you need to know to take part in the action, including some basic tips for those just starting out.

Lowland lakes open

Lakes that aren’t open year-round are now open to fishing, giving anglers new and old exciting, family-friendly fishing opportunities. Search for local fishing spots, with information on bank access, what’s in the water, and when it’s biting, here:

WDFW lowland lakes webpage

Annual statewide Trout Derby

The 2024 Trout Derby has started at more than 100 stocked lakes and runs through Oct. 31. Hundreds of prizes worth thousands of dollars and donated from over 80 participating businesses are still up for grabs.

The derby is open to anyone with a valid 2024 fishing license. There is no entrance fee or registration required. You just catch a tagged trout anytime between now and Oct. 31 and you win. Plus, children age 14 and under fish free.

Visit the derby information page to find a participating lake near you and learn more about how the derby works:

Derby information page

How to claim your prize

Did you catch a tagged trout? Check out this video to learn how to claim your prize!

Stocking details

For up-to-date fish stocking information, check the WDFW Catchable Trout Report for weekly updates.

For a look at the full breadth of fishing opportunity, especially if you don’t see your favorite lake listed in the weekly report of larger stocked fish, check the annual Statewide Trout and Kokanee Stocking Plan, which also includes fry plants stocked the year before and meant to grow into catchable size.

Check the report

Gear and tactics

When it comes to rods, reels, rigs, baits, lures, and tactics, the options are nearly endless and can be overwhelming if you’re new to trout fishing, so check out our “Basic Techniques for Trout Fishing in Washington” video:

This video showcases basic approaches to catching trout in lowland lakes throughout the state. The techniques you’ll learn include the slip-sinker rig for bottom fishing and the slip-bobber rig for fishing at any depth. You’ll also get to know various bait choices and knot tying, giving you what you need to know to be successful and then you can explore other options as you like.

When you’re ready

From there, our Fish Washington playlist on YouTube offers an array of knowledge on trout fishing, from hatchery work to more specific approaches to angling in different seasons and locations. That’s not to mention all the other fishing knowledge offered up on other species in this 68-video playlist.

Bring the kids

Thinking of taking your children trout fishing this year? WDFW has collected tips and tricks from staff biologists on fishing with youngsters to help make your outing a success.

Taking children fishing is a great chance to pass on an important tradition of fun, food, and conservation to your family. Fishing with your kids can be a great way to gain solace and reconnect with the natural world and your family. Even if you’re new to angling, it’s an opportunity to bring your loved ones together to learn a new skill and maybe create a new tradition.

For information on where and when to fish, what to use and how to keep kids engaged in the sport, read our blog on introducing kids to fishing:

Read the blog


If you haven’t already, you can buy your fishing licenses today — from an annual combination fishing license to the Fish Washington package to the Get Outdoors package — by visiting https://fishhunt.dfw.wa.gov, calling 360-902-2464, or going to a license dealer near you.

Tight lines to you, and we hope you have a safe and successful season fishing Washington!

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